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Toyota Keeps China Plant Output Stopped Through Feb. 16 As Virus Hits Supply, Logistics

The decision extends Toyota's initial plans to suspend operations through Sunday, and comes as the threat from the coronavirus crisis closes in on the global auto industry.

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Toyota Motor Corp on Friday said production at all of its plants in China would remain suspended through Feb. 16, joining a growing number of automakers facing output stoppages due to supply chain issues as the coronavirus outbreak spreads.

The Japanese automaker, which operates 12 vehicle and vehicle components factories in China, said it would extend its production stoppage "after considering various factors, including guidelines from local and region governments, parts supply, and logistics."

The decision extends Toyota's initial plans to suspend operations through Sunday, and comes as the threat from the coronavirus crisis closes in on the global auto industry.

A growing number of car makers are flagging the possibility that their global operations could take a hit if they cannot access supplies of parts made in China, where transportation bans have been put in place to limit the spread of the virus.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV said on Thursday that one of its European plants could shut down within two to four weeks if Chinese parts suppliers cannot get back to work soon, while Hyundai Motor Co earlier this week suspended production at its South Korean plants due to a shortage of China-made parts.

The next several weeks will be critical for automakers. Parts made in China are used in millions of vehicles assembled elsewhere, and China's Hubei province - the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak - is a major hub for vehicle parts production and shipments.

(Reuters)


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